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On a recent flight back from Europe, I sat next to a chronic job hopper. He seemed to always be looking for pay increases or a seemingly better fit. No surprise he was once again looking. He was amazed to learn that I’ve been with one company for almost 16 years. He thought job hopping was the key to finding the right company. Not so.

When considering a job change – whether it’s a new industry, comparing companies out of college or having several offers placed in front of you – it’s important to consider key factors beyond the obvious, the base pay. Begin your search by reviewing your career goals and asking yourself the following questions about the company:

1. Are they an Employer of Choice?

An employer of choice isn’t any “one” company and it may not be the same as someone else’s. Look for a company that will offer a culture and workplace environment that attracts and retains superior talent. They will offer a clear employer value proposition that will accurately summarize the challenges, growth, opportunities, learning experiences and type of work that needs to be done. Generally, they’ll have a strong leadership team and be well-respected within their industry. This article offers some great insight as you evaluate a potential employer.

2. What is the Company Culture?

Are you a creative individual with an entrepreneurial spirit who wants to work in a fast moving start-up environment or do you prefer a lower risk, more structured atmosphere? Make a viable job choice by aligning your value system with the company’s culture. is a popular site where you can research a company’s culture through reviews from current employees. (Pro tip: here’s Edelman’s dedicated page.)

3. What are the “Total Rewards” provided?

Look at the entire package. Compensation is only one way to judge the value of an offer. Ask about health and dental care, disability and life insurance, service awards, tuition reimbursement, flex time, paid time off and training.

4. Will I have Career Mobility?

Think beyond the job you’re up for. What comes after that? It’s important to know that the company encourages internal career growth. It may not always be an upward move, but seek out a company that offers the chance to work in a different group, office or city.

5. Is it a culture that embraces Diversity?

Does the company champion diversity of thought, perspective and background? Look for a firm that fosters an inclusive culture where employees are valued and integrated within every part of the company’s operation.

In short, start your search by looking for the right company, not just the right job. The better you get at asking the right questions, the sooner you’ll find the right match.

Julie Biber is Managing Director, Global Recruitment at Edelman. Follow Edelman on Twitter @EdelsideTalent and LinkedIn. For more information about Edelman’s public affairs offering, visit their website.